IDEA Public Schools Announces Plans to Serve Students in Jacksonville, Florida

JACKSONSVILLE, FLORIDA (January 8, 2020) –  IDEA Public Schools recently announced its plans to serve students in Jacksonville, Florida. IDEA will open four schools serving an estimated 900 students in Jacksonville in August of 2022.  In total, IDEA will educate more than 100,000 students across the country by 2022, preparing each of them to graduate and go to college.

Florida has made great strides in improving educational choice, accountability, and opportunities, but much work remains.  In several communities, a disheartening number of schools have earned a ‘D’ or ‘F’ grade for at least three of the past five years. IDEA Public Schools will provide an additional education option to help close the opportunity gap and increase levels of achievement for students and families in Jacksonville.

“We are excited that IDEA Public Schools is expanding to the Jacksonville area,” said Jose Luis De Leon, Executive Director of IDEA Jacksonville. “Our mission is to prepare students for success in college and citizenship. At IDEA, our goal is to provide families in Jacksonville with a high-quality school option. IDEA Jacksonville is excited to engage with the community, recruit top-notch principals and educators and create high-quality schools for the Jacksonville community.”

De Leon is originally from Elsa, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley and a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he studied Management Science at the Sloan School of Management.

De Leon began his career in education as a math teacher in the Rio Grande Valley. After earning his master’s in Educational Leadership from the University of Texas-Pan American, he became principal of Edcouch-Elsa High School, his alma mater. While principal, De Leon directed the math department to achieve an 11-point increase in state assessment scores within two years.

In 2010, De Leon became principal of IDEA Quest College Preparatory where they were named College Preparatory of the Year four times, Campus of the Year three times, and achieved the highest ACT average in the district six years in a row–setting a district record. IDEA Quest College Preparatory was recently named an Exemplary Achievement Gap Closing National Blue-Ribbon School in 2019 by the U.S. Department of Education.

IDEA Public Schools is a family of tuition-free, college preparatory public charter schools founded in the Rio Grande Valley in 2000. Since then, IDEA has opened schools in Austin, San Antonio, El Paso and Tarrant County in Texas, as well as Baton Rouge and New Orleans in Louisiana – in total serving more than 53,000 students. For 13 consecutive years, 100 percent of IDEA Public Schools’ graduates have been accepted to four-year colleges and universities.

“As a former migrant worker, I know first-hand the power of a college education,” says De Leon. “As the leader of IDEA’s Jacksonville region, I’m eager to continue IDEA’s legacy of graduating 100% of its students to be college-ready and have an acceptance to the college of their choice.”

IDEA believes a quality K – 12 public education is the key to success in college and life and is committed to helping every student achieve their own success. IDEA sets high expectations for every student and goes the extra mile to make sure every student realizes their own potential. Personalized learning, critical thinking skills, mastery of core subjects and continued support through college is IDEA’s recipe for success.

For more information on IDEA Public Schools, please contact Jennifer Flores at or (210) 551-9253, or visit



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